Every year, one of our best All School Meetings is the one where we are able to express our gratitude for our retiring faculty and staff. This year, we are saying goodbye to five retiring faculty members and two administrative staff members: Mark Howland (English – 29 years), Phil Sanborn (Music – 34 years), Kelli McSweeny (English – 29 years), Bob Mogilnicki ’76 (Ceramics – 29 years), Lynne Barker (Spanish – 9 years), Dorelle Zahn (Advancement – 15 years), Leslie Geil (Admissions – 33 years). They have given their hearts and souls to Tabor, creating or contributing to many of the programs and relationships that make us so strong and proud.
To celebrate their achievements, colleagues are invited to share thoughts about the impact of those leaving their departments after decades of service. Their comments are sometimes funny, sometimes short and sweet, and other times share layers of emotional history between friends. They are always from the heart and make us swell with pride as we consider the dedicated work each departing person has shared with our school community. As each person was announced, you could hear the students exhale “AWW…” expressing their sadness at realizing who was leaving Tabor. It is bittersweet, indeed.
After the speakers, the mood was lifted by a terrific live musical performance, a rock band made up of five international boys singing a Chinese pop song called “10,000 Times of Sadness.” They acknowledged the title was tough given the moment, but assured us that the song reminds us that through disappointment we grow stronger. It was a fitting closure, for as we know these departing teachers will be sorely missed for their unique attributes and contributions, the passion they bring to their work will be replaced in new ways by our incoming faculty and staff. Such is the nature of our dynamic school. Change brings renewal, energy, and new friendships built on the foundation of the contributions and support of our old true friends, who will always be part of us.
At Tabor we say, “Once a Seawolf, always a Seawolf.” While we will miss the daily presence of our retiring friends, we can look forward to their future visits to our shows, gallery openings, games, and community events. And, with each living right here in town, there is some solace knowing we can maintain our close ties in person.
We appreciate and thank our retiring teachers for their decades of dedicated service to Tabor. They have each made an indelible mark on our school!